Survivor Benefits

Nov 12, 2013

Rarely do employees review all the facets of their employee benefits programs…until there is a particular need. But, within the myriad of coverage available, one item that is glossed over and given very little thought of is Survivor Benefits. Survivor Benefits can be found in most group health and dental plans and provides another layer of protection for dependents in the event of the death of the insured employee. For most, the health and financial welfare of dependents and family is paramount in planning. Survivor Benefits can assist in maintaining healthcare and dental protection after the death of the employee.

Eligible dependents who are insured for health and dental benefits on the date of death will continue to be insured for all aspects of the insured benefits in the same fashion as prior to the employee’s death. This is not for an unlimited period of time, but for the number of months indicated in the group contract. Most often, the group contract will indicate the period of coverage to be 24 months, but this may vary and should be confirmed.

There are circumstances however in which the coverage for the dependents will not continue for the full period outlined and this is primarily related to the status of the dependents such as:

  • the date the dependents become eligible for another group insurance plan
  • the date the dependent no longer is considered an eligible dependent, example; due to age
  • or in the case of the plan being terminated all together

Survivor Benefits are also unique in that they are usually on a non premium paying basis after the death of the employee, allowing for continuation of coverage without a financial burden to the remaining dependents. As the long term well being of a family is undertaken, Survivor Benefits should not be overlooked as another item in that plan.

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